Donegal Bluestack Way 5 – Day-Self-Guided Walking Tour

The Donegal Bluestack Way is a way-marked walking trail that stretches along a 118 km route through the remotest areas of County Donegal in the northwest of Ireland. Our 5-day Donegal Bluestack Way hiking tour offers you a revitalising short break, where you will walk a distance of 65 km, from Donegal Town to the quaint village of Ardara.

Along the route, you will experience the wild and raw nature of the Donegal countryside as you hike across the rolling and gentle hills of the Bluestack Mountains. Starting in the town of Donegal, you will enjoy a unique, self-guided walking experience by the scenic banks of Lough Eske before exploring the ancient village of Glencolmcille. You will enjoy marvellous coastal cliffs with their myriad of bird and plant life, before following a riverside route eventually reaching our endpoint in Ardara.

For visitors interested in enjoying a longer stay, you may want to explore some of our extended Self-Guided Walking Tours of Ireland.

Prices / Dates

Price:  €639 per person sharing

Single Supplement: +€320

Solo Traveller Supplement: +€45

Tour Dates: 1 April to 15 October

Tour Grade: Easy to Moderate

Accommodation: Guesthouse

Included / Excluded

Day 1 - Donegal Town

Take public transport from Dublin to Donegal Town where you will spend your next two nights. Public transport takes approximately 3 hours 30 minutes. 
Donegal Town, protected by the proud O’Donnell Castle. Built in the 1400s by the first Red Hugh and his wife Lady Nuala, the castle is an excellent introduction to this region's tradition, strong heritage and abundance of culture.

Day 2 - Owenboy to Donegal Town

Your tour of the Donegal and Bluestack Way starts with a complimentary taxi transfer to the townland of Owenboy. The trail takes you back across the foothills of Banagher to cross the River Eglish and along by the beautiful shores of Lough Eske, finishing back in Donegal Town.

Distance: 20.4 Km/12.75 miles; Ascent: 362 m / 1086 ft; Descent: 522 m / 1566, Approximate walking time: 5 to 6 hours.      

Day 3 - Owenboy to the village of Glenties

The trail takes you along an old bog road and through farmland that takes you on a beautiful section across the foothills of the Bluestacks Mountains to finish your day in the village of Glenties.

Distance: 19.84 Km / 12.4 miles; Ascent: 588 m / 1764 ft; Descent: 655 m / 1965; Approximate walking time: 6 to 7 hours

Day 4 - Glenties to Ardara

From the village of Glenties, you will hike along quiet back roads to arrive at the banks of the Owentocker River. Following the bank of the river, this meandering walk brings you into the village of Ardara. Ardara is a designated Heritage Town and also a well-known centre for the manufacture of Donegal homespun tweeds.

Distance: 11.80 Km; Ascent: 68 m, Descent: 96 m, Approximate walking time: 3 to 4 hours

Day 5 - Depart

After a hearty Irish breakfast, you will depart for home.

A few words from our customers...

If you love to hike in along the wild ocean, far from the tourist traps, this one week experience is absolutely delightful. Thank you Chris & Teresa - I am putting another hike with you on my "bucket list".
If you have any doubts about booking a walking tour with Footfalls, Christopher and Theresa, don’t! Our accommodations were all comfortable, clean and provided us with delicious food. We loved the hiked and the quietness of the trails, on most days we only uncounted sheep and a few likeminded travellers and the odd farmer. You can see that Footfalls has fostered great relationships with businesses along the way and I wouldn’t have any qualms booking with them again.
Janssen & Mike